Self-Love: It’s a Rort.

“We were never really born, we will never really die. It has nothing to do with the imaginary idea of a personal self, other selves, many selves everywhere: Self is only an idea, a mortal idea. That which passes into everything is one thing. It’s a dream already ended,” wrote Jack Kerouac in a letter to his first wife, found in The Portable Jack Kerouac. Continue reading

7 Thoughts for the Day

1. We can hold an instant in time in our hands with a photograph, and we can hold hours of time in our hands with a DVD. How fuckin’ weird is that?

2. The planets are moving further apart from each other at an increasing rate as space expands. If it’s just the continuation of the big bang, why is it speeding up not slowing down? Scientists don’t know and I think that’s COOL.

3. Because of space we carve objects into separate identities and give things their own names and attributes. Yet we ignore space most of the time when without it, there would be nothing to name. Poor ol’ space. Continue reading

Illusions: The Adventures of a Reluctant Messiah

‘You’re quoting Snoopy the Dog, I believe.’

‘I’ll quote the truth wherever I find it, thank you.’ – Donald Shimoda.

***

Illusions, by Richard Bach has quickly become one of my favourite books, warranting me to reach out to the author and thank him for writing it. He’s in his eighties now and kindly replied to my email: ‘So glad to know you found the story, and the characters and their ideas touched you. They’ve worked in my life for a long time. I hope they’ll be lifelong friends for you, too!’ Continue reading

Earning My Place: Jamie Stedman’s High Impact Life

Jamie ‘Stedo’ Stedman has lived a few different lives… he discusses drugs, family, death (his own), and his view on finding ‘purpose’. 

When I first met Jamie Stedman, ex-prison officer and current editor of Orange City Life, I immediately liked him. Not sure why, but that’s how it works for me. Over the next few years, I changed my mind several times as we butted heads big time, but I always came back around. On this particular day when we first met, Stedo and I were introduced, we exchanged hellos, and that was it – I knew he was an alright bloke.

What I didn’t know then, and wouldn’t for years, were the colourful stories that shaped who he is, or who he chooses to be. A man of loyalty, bluntness, defensiveness, humour and often pig-headedness. It’s a lot easier to understand him when you discover where he’s been: a kid who tried his best to look after a dysfunctional family; who hid heroin in piles of pigeon shit from his mother; who has died twice with a cricket ball through his spleen. And that’s not even half of it. Continue reading

Oops… I forgot I Was Ordinary

It all started as a single thought. Doesn’t it always start that way?

I’d been feeling pretty good for quite a long time, but after the horrific bombing in Manchester, other world events and the way the media gobbled it all up excitedly, it was easy to let negative thoughts seep in. It’s life, it happens. But instead of greeting these emotions and moving them along, I invited them in for a cuppa. Continue reading

Letters to My Ex: What’s in It for Me?

The vast majority of the writers I have contacted about the Letters to My Ex anthology have embraced the concept right away: it’s about women and connection. The letters are written to an unnamed, often male recipient, but it’s not about men at all.

A friend recently suggested it might be best to spell out the ‘what’s in it for me’ factor. Since I’ve had a few people write to me asking about payment (there’s no payment), I’m going to address this perfectly reasonable question. Continue reading

Why I Hate Being Nice: Eckhart-Fucking-Tolle, Clementine Ford & The Fat Stinkin’ Elephant in the Room

I cringe when I look back on any writing I’ve done where I talk about being fairly content in life, “Mostly happy, more centred than ever.” I don’t cringe because it’s a lie. I cringe because it paints only a partial truth – I am MOSTLY happy. You must not forget the MOSTLY. It was a fucking long road to get to MOSTLY from RARELY. Why am I yelling?

Continue reading

The Gate

A poem by Marie Howe.

 

I had no idea that the gate I would step through
to finally enter this world

would be the space my brother’s body made. He was
a little taller than me: a young man

but grown, himself by then,
done at twenty-eight, having folded every sheet,

rinsed every glass he would ever rinse under the cold
and running water.

This is what you have been waiting for, he used to say to me.
And I’d say, What?

And he’d say, This—holding up my cheese and mustard sandwich.
And I’d say, What?

And he’d say, This, sort of looking around.